Dear Ancestor … Author Unknown

dearancestor“Your tombstone stands among the rest; distinct, but not alone. The name and date are chiseled out on polished, marble stone. It reaches out to all who care. It’s not too late to mourn. You did not know that I exist. You died and I was born.

“Yet each of us are cells of you … In flesh, in blood, in bone. Our blood contracts and beats a pulse entirely not our own.

“Dear ancestor, the place you filled, one hundred years ago, spreads out among the ones you left who would have loved you so.

“I wonder that you lived and loved; I wonder if you knew … that some day I would find this spot and come to visit you.” ~ Author Unknown (adapted) 

Do not stand at my grave and weep

053

“Do not stand at my grave and weep. I am not there. I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush I am the swift uplifting rush of quiet birds in circled flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there. I did not die.”    ~ Mary Elizabeth Frye

260 (2)For all the saints

“For all the saints, who from their labors rest, who Thee by faith before the world confessed, Thy name, O Jesus, be forever blest. Alleluia, Alleluia. O blest communion, fellowship divine. We feebly struggle, they in glory shine; yet all are one in Thee, for all are Thine. Alleluia, Alleluia.

“But when there breaks a yet more glorious day; the saints triumphant rise in bright array; the King of glory passes on His way. Alleluia, Alleluia. From earth’s wide bounds, from ocean’s farthest coast, through gates of pearl, streams in the countless host, in praise of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Alleluia, Alleluia.”

“… so great a cloud of witnesses.”

ArieMattie“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”    ~ Hebrews 12: 1

“Every single moment of life that we experience on this planet is tied to eternity.”

~ Rev. Dr. R.C. Sproul

VDBstones

MartinAndPetra“I think of the saints I have known, and lift up mine eyes … To the far-away home of beautiful Paradise,

“Where the song of saints gives voice to an undividing sea. On whose plain their feet stand firm, while they keep their jubilee.

“As the sound of waters, their voice; as the sound of thunderings. While they all at once rejoice, while all sing and while each one sings;

“Where more saints flock in, and more, and yet more, and again yet more, and not one turns back to depart thro’ the open entrance-door.

GGH“O sights of our lovely earth, O sound of our earthly sea, speak to me of Paradise, of all blessed saints to me:

“Or keep silence touching them, and speak to my heart alone, of the Saint of saints, the King of kings, the Lamb upon the Throne.” ~ Christina Georgina Rosetti (1830 – 1894)

JoeHat_rosesSaints and Angels

“It’s oh in Paradise that I fain would be, away from earth and weariness and all beside;

“Earth is too full of loss with its dividing sea, but Paradise upbuilds the bower for the bride.

“Where flowers are yet in bud while the boughs are green, I would get quit of earth and get robed for heaven; putting on my raiment white within the screen, putting on my crown of gold whose gems are seven. Fair is the fourfold river that maketh no moan, fair are the trees fruit-bearing of the wood.

“The road to death is life; the gate of life is death.”

vandermaaten2“We who wake shall sleep; we shall wax who wane; Let us not vex our souls for stoppage of a breath, the fall of a river that turneth not again.

“Be the road short, and be the gate near– Shall a short road tire, a strait gate appall? The loves that meet in Paradise shall cast out fear, and Paradise hath room for you and me and all.” ~ Christina Georgina Rosetti

Norwegian Rivers  ...“Yah, now shall they see, the affluent grandchildren, how strong and supple minds ran those rebellious rivers into the sea. And now, yah, shall they hear the low music of springs watering those impoverished mountain meadows.

hendrickHendrickson_Lisbon“Then, yah, it was then, stout in their sadness, they stuffed their childhood into rosemaler trunks, clamped them with iron bands, locked once and for all on the eastern hemispheres, and down those rutted trails and noisy rivers, out through the western fjords, they rode for half a century over the Atlantic on one great ascending wave toward the virgin hills and wide inland valleys of Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

“And now, yah, even now, grandmothers sitting in their rocking chairs, and watching their children’s children in Bergen and Decorah, Hardanger and St. Paul, say, half to themselves, yah, they are so kind of restless, they always have somewhere to go, hearing under their half-drooping eyelids, the melancholy of those hard hills, and those old stones, and rivers calling under the walled-up fjords, to the muffled horns of the sea … ” ~ Joseph Langland

VeteransDay“A life on the land is thick with sin and grace, with death and resurrection.”

LarsSerinaHendricksonStone“So many miles over so many years, so many hands in so many generations, but one single story on the land … but where once there were Hendrickson farms up and down the dusty roads of that part of Iowa, now there is only one … The rest are gone … like the names that once plowed that rich prairie. Yet the prairie remains; it lives and thrives and produces so much more … The names have changed … but the song of the prairie goes on in a new key … In the country you are surrounded by Biblical metaphors. A life on the land is thick with sin and grace, with death and resurrection. A farmer of fields and flocks and herds quickly learns what it means to take up his cross … what it means to lose your life, only to find it again.”  ~ Rev. Dr. Marion Lars Hendrickson

DSCN6101Deuteronomy

“Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you.” ~ Deuteronomy 32:7

“To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child. For what is the worth of human life, unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history?” ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero

Malum_Stone“So do not stand at my grave and weep. I am not there. I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush I am the swift uplifting rush of quiet birds in circled flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there. I did not die.”   ~ Mary Elizabeth Frye

Dear ancestors,

“Your tombstones stand among the rest; distinct, but not alone. The names and dates are chiseled out on polished, marble stone. The names reach out to all who care. It’s not too late to mourn. You did not know that I exist. You died and I was born.

“Yet each of us are cells of you … In flesh, in blood, in bone. Our blood contracts and beats a pulse entirely not our own.

“Dear ancestors, the place you filled, one hundred years ago, spreads out among the ones you left who would have loved you so. I wonder that you lived and loved; I wonder if you knew … that some day I would find these spots and come to visit you …”

Case stone all

“His toils are past; his work is done. He fought the fight, the victory won.”

“IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE ARE MANY MANSIONS.”

(Gravestone of Joseph Royalty Case (1830-1899) and Elizabeth Russell Case (1831-1898)

 

Louisa_Obadiah_crop

Pointing skyward – Hope of Heaven 

(Gravestone of Obadiah James Case (1801-1868) and Louisiana “Louisa” Case (1811-1878))

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